Cutting and bulking are concepts that most people have a vague idea of, but don’t really know how to do. My new article at Return of Kings elaborates on the concept by, among other things, giving a sample day of food on a bulking diet, and a sample day of food on a cutting diet.
Bulking is defined as deliberately packing on poundage with the intention of simultaneously stimulating muscular development through exercise, with the end goal of later slimming down and having larger and more impressive muscular definition. Cutting is the previously mentioned act of slimming down for purposes of having a trimmer physique.
The reason that this works is a simple one: Should you want to build muscle, you do so in the same way you build a fire—the more wood you put on the fire, the bigger the fire will be. Similarly, having a surplus of calories and various nutrients (proteins, amino acids, vitamins, fatty acids, etc.) will create bigger muscles. Or, to use the proper term, will keep the muscles in a state of anabolism, literally metabolic functions of creating large molecules from small molecules—most notably the formation of protein strands from amino acids.
From Wikipedia: “The surplus of calories relative to one’s energy balance will ensure that muscles remain in a state of anabolism.”
While eating a nutritional surplus will create an optimal internal environment for building muscle, it will by definition also be an optimal environment for increasing the size of adipose tissue as well-in short, an optimal environment for putting on fat. This is why Olympic weightlifters and strongmen tend to be fairly rotund, despite clearly having muscle underneath their flab.
You can read the article right here